If you’ve been injured, you may wonder how much people typically receive for a personal injury settlement. Every case is different, meaning settling is not always a straightforward process.
Depending on the circumstances, parties may receive anywhere from a few thousand dollars to hundreds of thousands of dollars. The extent of your injuries is a big factor in how much the settlement may be.
Understanding Neck And Back Injuries
Neck and back injuries are some of the most common injuries people suffer during car accidents. These injuries can range from minor soreness to severe conditions requiring ongoing and extensive treatment.
Neck and back injuries refer to damage to the spine, muscles, ligaments, soft tissue, or nerves in the neck and back areas. You can sustain these injuries from car accidents, slips and falls, workplace accidents, or sports-related incidents.
Common Types Of Neck And Back Injuries
If you’ve been diagnosed with any of these or suspect these types of conditions, you may be dealing with a neck and back injury:
- Whiplash: This is a common injury seen in car accidents, occurring when the head jerks forward and backward. Symptoms include pain, stiffness, and trouble moving the head and neck.
- Herniated Disc: This happens when the discs between spinal bones rupture or bulge, causing pressure on the nerves. It causes pain, numbness, or weakness.
- Sprains and Strains: Muscle and ligament injuries caused by stretching or tearing.
- Spinal Fractures: These typically require surgery, as they are severe injuries resulting in broken bones in the spine.
- Pinched Nerves: When nerves get “pinched” between surrounding tissue, it may cause pain, numbness, and tingling that radiates down the arms and legs.
- Spinal Cord Injuries: They are the most severe injuries and may cause paralysis.
Factors That Affect Settlement Amounts
Many factors are considered when determining a fair settlement amount for a neck and back injury. Understanding what impacts the settlement can help you know what to expect throughout the process.
1. Severity of the Injury: The injury itself is a main factor in determining a settlement amount. More serious injuries typically result in higher settlements than minor ones.
2. Medical Costs: Your medical bills and ongoing costs for medical care are also considered when determining a settlement amount.
3. Loss of Income: If the injury causes you to miss work or impacts your future abilities to work and earn income, it will be considered when calculating a settlement.
4. Pain and Suffering: Your attorney will work to get you compensated for physical pain and suffering along with emotional distress due to the injury.
5. Impact on Daily Life: If your ability to live a normal life or enjoy hobbies and activities you did before the accident is impacted, this will be a considering factor in the settlement.
6. Your Role in the Accident: If you were partially responsible for a car accident that caused your injuries, the settlement amount may be reduced to reflect your share of responsibility. In Louisiana, this is known as a comparative fault.
7. Legal Representation: Having a skilled personal injury attorney to advocate on your behalf can significantly impact your settlement amount. Your attorney will fight to ensure fair compensation for your injury.
How Much Is A Typical Settlement?
Unfortunately, there isn’t a simple “one-size-fits-all” calculation for these types of injuries. However, the more severe the injury is and the more it impacts your life, the greater the settlement will be.
For example, whiplash is a common injury that’s usually not very severe and heals within several weeks. A settlement may be a few thousand dollars or closer to $30,000 if ongoing physical therapy is needed.
On the other hand, damage to soft tissue and tendons may settle for $10,000 to $100,000 if they require more extensive care.
Extremely severe injuries, like those to your spinal cord, vertebrae, or severe nerve damage, may settle for hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars. Still, these serious injuries are very expensive to treat and may cause problems for victims for the rest of their lives.
Remember that your ability to prove your injuries will impact your ability to win your case with a fair settlement. That’s why it’s so important to seek medical care immediately and keep all your records, bills, and any evidence you collect.
How Long Does A Settlement Take?
The time it takes both parties to reach an agreement may vary. If the case is complicated or there are serious injuries to consider, the case may take longer. Most cases settle in about a year, but many can be resolved in just a couple of months.
What To Do After Receiving A Settlement Offer
Receiving a settlement offer for your injuries can be a huge relief, especially if you’re trying to pay for medical bills and other expenses. However, it’s critical to understand the offer and evaluate it for fairness.
Review the offer with your attorney to ensure you understand what’s included, the amount offered, and any terms and conditions attached to the settlement. Then, you and your attorney will evaluate the offer against your damages – physical injuries, the impact on your daily life, financial losses, medical bills, and so on.
It’s also important to think about the long-term effects of your injury. Consider whether you may need surgery or therapies in the future – does the offer address these needs?
Then, you and your attorney may negotiate with the other party. In that case, you’ll submit a counteroffer that better reflects your damages and expenses. This may continue more than once before a final settlement is reached.
Seek Guidance From An Experienced Personal Injury Attorney To Maximize Your Settlement
Remember, insurance companies are looking to pay out as little as possible. They don’t take the time to consider how your injuries may impact you in the future or the pain and suffering you’re experiencing now.
To get the compensation you deserve and maximize your settlement offer, you should consult an experienced personal injury attorney who will fight on your behalf.
Contact the Law Offices of Chip Forstall today to discuss your case and better understand the settlement amount you deserve.